Serial ‘parking lot puker’ vexes Iowa salon owner

Posted at 7:49 PM, Aug 07, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-07 19:49:12-04

URBANDALE, Iowa -- After years of cutting hair, Marissa King was proud to finally open up her own place in 2018 – but things have taken a strange, and objectively gross turn.

“This is by far one of the most bizarre things I've ever experienced. Never did I think with opening a business I would have something quite like this to deal with,” said King, the owner of Maven Salon Studios in Urbandale, Iowa.

King says since June she's been dealing with what she calls the “Parking Lot Puker,” a man driving up to her business, vomiting in the parking lot, and leaving.

"It was starting to get excessive, multiple days in a row," King said. "Basically, he started to come around to where our clients enter and exit their vehicles and they were starting to take notice as well. A lot of them actually thought someone dropped a pizza in the parking lot."

King said after about the fifth time they decided to put up a camera to catch the barfing bandit in the act, and one morning they recorded the suspect in the act.

"They said, 'there's vomit in the parking lot, check the cameras!' So, I went on and I started scrolling through. I could see the vehicle come in from the south side of the parking lot, sit in the car for five or so minutes, clearly vomit for a few minutes," said King.

King says the situation is ridiculous, but she worries that the nighttime exploits of the unidentified upchucker threatens her business' reputation.

“We try to maintain a very professional and clean environment, not only inside but outside as well." King said. "With clients taking notice of it was definitely disrupting out day-to-day."

Urbandale police said the man could be charged with criminal mischief or trespassing should King wish to press charges, but King said she just wants the vomiting vandal to go away.

“I sympathize if he has any sort of medical condition or anything like that. I don’t want to get him trouble, but I have to look out for my business and our customers. It just needs to stop,” she said.

King has floated the idea of staking out the parking lot to catch the person herself, or leaving a bucket with a note to please take his behavior elsewhere.